“The brain you stole, Fritz. Think of it. The brain of a dead man waiting to live again in a body I made with my own hands! ” Dr. Henry Frankenstein, Frankenstein 
When I made my first post on this blog 158 days ago, on July 26th 2008 at 17:41 EST, I really didn’t have a clue about what I was getting myself into. I was really only aware of a few RPG blogs at the time, UncleBear, ChattyDM, and Crtical-Hits, and had no idea that there were so many more or think that the RPG Blogosphere would explode like it has.
The Labs began as a design diary for two projects of mine, a custom d20 point-buy/rank-based system called Echelon, and an original steampunk-horror setting called The Dead Wastes. Then I joined this fledgling network known as the RPG Bloggers Network and the blog began to evolve (and the network has grown tremendously).
It changed so much that I decided to move from free hosting to paid hosting so I could have greater control over the design. Mad Brew Labs still has a small footprint in the RPG Blogosphere, but I see my traffic numbers grow every month.
So now I have this lumbering creation of mine and a need to focus its energies on some actual goals for 2009. We can call them resolutions in the spirit of the New Year.
- COLLABORATE & NETWORK (the keystone of the future of the RPG Blogosphere
- Update this machine to WordPress 2.7
- Improve the theme (mostly the comment area)
- Play 5 new systems (including starting an Alpha Omega game)
- PDF some of my content (Tidings of Thule, Mad Menagerie, etc.)
- Finish Echelon (though I lost all my work…)
- Expand upon The Dead Wastes
- Add 12 new creature to the Mad Menagerie
- Merge my love of programming with my love of roleplaying
- Get more table time
I figured I also might make some predictions for 2009. Some of them are obvious, but I figured I would go out on a limb and give at least ONE crazy prediction. Am I claiming that I am a prophet and all this will unfold, hell no! But its fun to speculate:
- Due to the economy, the industry will see cutbacks, closings, & new business models
- In spite (or because?) of the economy, there will be more exceptional resources
- The RPG Blogosphere will continue to evolve, and make a big impact
- DDI still won’t be finished by GenCon
- Someone else will make a product that does what DDI was supposed to do, but better
- The GSL will still suck
- Paizo will own a significant market share, just below WotC and possibly better than White Wolf
- 4.x D&D will be the last edition published under Hasbro (some event will catalyze this)
I mentioned that the RPG Blogosphere would continue evolving and make a big impact. The online community is on the verge of greatness, and I know I’m not the only one who feels this way. I cannot quite put my finger on exactly what is going to happen, but I think we will see more of these:
- Greater collaboration between bloggers
- More collaboration with the industry
- Attract more of those forum lurkers
- THE go to place for the best content/resources
- We will go through a smelting as the fittest solidify their dominions
Where do you see the RPG blogosphere or industry going? What would you like to see?